The recent UN Climate Change report has been widely publicised as a “Code Red” for our planet. “The door is still ajar”, we are told, to avert catastrophe, but will soon shut irreversibly. The rate at which we, the human population, are causing irreparable damage has risen exponentially. We are already seeing and feeling the results of this: everywhere on Earth, people are experiencing messed-up, unpredictable weather patterns. Some have been hit with disastrous flooding from excessive rain and others with devastating wildfires from excessive heat. What, if anything, does the Bible have to say about our environment? Right back in the Garden of Eden, man and woman were given responsibility for looking after the earth, along with obeying God’s commands. It’s a responsibility which we have failed to live up to, developing societies based on greed, selfishness and convenience instead. It’s therefore not surprising that we are paying the consequences – not only environmentally, but morally and physically too. Romans 8:22 says that “the whole Creation groans” (NKJV): by dislocating our relationship with our Creator, we have made a mess of everything. But that “groaning” is not just in despair: they are the groans of “birth pangs”! A better time is coming, which this environmental damage is presaging. God has a definite purpose with the Earth: “…God, who formed the earth and made it, who has established it, who did not create it in vain, who formed it to be inhabited…” (Isaiah 45:18) God is not going to allow the planet to be destroyed. He has a plan for it – “…as truly as I live, all the earth shall be filled with the glory of the LORD…” (Numbers 14:21). This glory will not only be physical beauty but moral perfection too, when God’s beautiful character will be reflected in every person living on the earth. So, while we care greatly about what happens to our wonderful planet that God created and do our best not to be wasteful or damaging, we also look forward in hope to the glory that will come. Some may wring their hands in despair, some may shrug their shoulders in indifference, and others might throw themselves into environmental campaigning, but the Bible recognises there is an ultimate solution to this terrible problem. It lies in the return of God’s Son, the Lord Jesus Christ, to the earth, to transform it both morally and physically. “Even so, come, Lord Jesus.” (Revelation 22:20) pershore.bible pershore-christadelphians.org

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